My passion for protecting the environment is reflected in my workshop practice

 
 
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Taking Responsibility

LIGHT FOOTPRINT

The way I make jewellery reflects to a great extent the way I have always lived - striving to leave as light a footprint as is practical in the modern world and with an aversion to over-consumption or unecessary waste.

That’s why from the outset in 2005, when I set up Glasswing, I knew I didn’t want my business to go against my principles.

Acting responsibly with regards to how I sourced materials and my working practice was key to what Glasswing has always been about.

RECYCLED SILVER

That’s why as soon as I realised 100% recycled silver was available, almost all the silver I used in my jewellery was recycled (apart from the chains which are impossible to buy in recycled silver).

RECYCLED GOLD

Once I started using more gold in my designs, that too was all recycled.

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Fairtrade Gold

GOING FURTHER WITH GOLD

The idea that the most beautiful, luxurious and valuable items in the world are made by exploiting the most vulnerable people on the planet, working in unthinkably hellish conditions, is an ugly reality that finally, thankfully, is impossible for the jewellery industry to ignore.

Campaigners and activists working in mining communities, and a handful of companies are now helping artisanal miners set up safe working conditions in the mines and more jewellers and consumers are demanding to know where the materials they are buying come from.

REGISTERED AS A FAIRTRADE GOLDSMITH SINCE 2014

This is something I am passionate about and in 2014 I registered as a Fairtrade Goldsmith, joining a scheme set up to enable small business designer/makers like myself to buy Fairtrade Gold.

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Ethical Gemstones

GEMS

I buy gemstones from a very small handful of truly ethical suppliers, those that have the knowledge of the gem’s supply, leading right back to the environmentally responsible and safety-conscious mine from which the gems were extracted.

Most gems I use come from the USA, Australia and Canada plus from ethical, environmentally responsible mines in Africa.

DIAMONDS

I use recycled diamonds, in my opinion the most environmentally responsible, conflict-free option possible, as well as Canadian and Australian origin diamonds.

SEA GLASS

I also use genuine sea glass, which I collect on the beaches of the beautiful Devon and Cornwall coastlines, and sometimes I buy from trusted collectors here in the UK and around the world.

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My Ethical Processes

GREEN

Along with ensuring the materials I use are fairly and ethically sourced or 100% recycled, I use a 100% renewable, green energy tariff for all the workshop and office’s energy needs.

TRADITIONAL

In my workshop, I use simple tools and traditional techniques, including a lot of elbow grease!

VEGAN

None of the disposables I use in the business such as metal polishing compounds contain animal products and since Febrary 2018 I’ve not bought any equipment (or food!) that contains any animal products at all (many traditional tools contain leather and many compounds contain animal fats).

The office and workshop are also 100% vegan.

UTILISING UK SKILLS

For processes that I outsource, I pay UK contractors, such as casters, fabricators and finishers a fair price for their highly skilled work.